Category Archive Station Building

We Are Licensed!

It has been a very long road, starting way back in 2011 when RETN and VCAM were approached by a small group of community members who knew that the FCC was going to open up a new (and probably the last ever) low power FM licensing window the following year. We formed a committee and applied for a construction permit to build a radio station here at the Media Factory. Our construction permit was approved by the FCC in September of 2014 and station-building began in earnest.

Our deadline to get on the air and complete our filing with the FCC was in November of this year and we made it! with the invaluable help of our volunteers and staff, we were awarded an LPFM license from the FCC on December 12, officially bringing the “station building” phase of WBTV-LP to a close.

Now begins the job of putting all the hard work and planning into a continued, sustainable effort to keep WBTV-LP not just on the air, but a valuable, needed voice in the community. That’s where you come in! There are several ways you can get involved at the station. Here are a few ideas:

  • Get a show! WBTV-LP accepts new program applications on a rolling basis and does bi-annual new-programmer trainings in December and June.
  • Volunteer on a station committee! WBTV-LP station leadership is done by committees made up of community members and RETN and VCAM staff. There’s always room for more help on the Radio Advisory Council, the outreach committee, the programming committee and/or the tech committee. Email the station coordinator for more info.
  • Become a listener-member! Do you prefer to stay in the background and support the station as a listener? Become a listener-member and contribute financially and as a voting member at our annual meetings. Email the station coordinator for more info.

Stay tuned as we roll out several new local radio shows in January and February of 2018 — the first round of officially-licensed programming from WBTV-LP, Burlington!

My Grassroots Radio Conference 2017 Recap

Grassroots Radio Conference 2017
Shelagh Connor Shapiro, WBTV-LP DJ
Host, “Write the Book” Radio Show

Podcast-110-GRC-2017.jpgEarlier this month, the Media Factory made it possible for me to attend the Grassroots Radio Conference in Albany, New York. Now that WBTV-LP is broadcasting, it was particularly exciting to be immersed in the culture of community radio and learn from people at all different levels of station development. Some120-150 people attended, representing community and LP stations from around the country. I learned a great deal about the operations, organizations, and visions of many grassroots radio businesses, took a lot of notes, and brought back some ideas for WBTV-LP to consider as we become more established on the Burlington radio airwaves. These are the presentations and workshops I attended:

  • 10 strategies to market your radio station, led by Marketing Professional Lisbeth Calandrino.
  • Lessons from Canada–disrupting settler colonialism and oppression in the media, a Skype presentation led by Laith Marouf (in Canada) and Gretchen King (in attendance at the conference), from CKUT in Montreal.
  • Fundraising: grant writing, pledge drives, underwriting, led by Clark Grant (KBMF-LP) / Butte America Foundation.
  • Community radio roundtable (a survey of the community radio landscape and a conversation about developing a support network): Sharon Scott (WXOX); Vanessa Graber (WPPM); Mike Yates (WAYO); Lauree McArdle (WERA); Cathryn Platine (WLPP); LaGanzie Kale (KLEK)
  • Writing and reading news script: “Groundwire,” led by Gretchen King and Candace Mooers (CKUT)
  • Station management: the story of KBMF In Butte, Montana, led by Clark Grant (KBMF-LP)
  • Receiving and distributing community radio content with Pacifica network and other national platforms, led by Ursula Ruedenberg and Rebekka Reuter (KHOI)

21144462713_db42c61325_z.jpgSince returning to Vermont, I’ve joined the Grassroots Radio Conference listserv, and plan to keep an eye on correspondence coming out of that group. I’ll be going over my notes at the December WBTV-LP RAC Meeting, which is open to the public. If anyone is interested to learn more, please come to that meeting on December 11 at 5:30 p.m. at the Media Factor at 208 Flynn Ave.

We are on your radio dial Burlington! 99.3FM

21463145_10155024234090875_862877934453586997_nAfter six years in the making, we finally got our antenna up and powered on at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, September 8 (just in time for the 25th South End Art Hop). This was a labor of love by dozens of dedicated community volunteers and our partners at VCAM and RETN. To say we are excited is the understatement of the year.

Reset those car presets and tune in those work radios to the new 99.3FM, the newest community radio in the queen city of Burlington, VT!

And catch our locally made programming for this fall!

fall_schedule

We are hiring! WBTV-LP Station Coordinator (part-time)

Come work with a rad crew of Burlington radio-makers!

WBTV-LP, Burlington is a new community radio station in the queen city, with a mission to connect people in Burlington with community radio that is created and curated locally, dedicated to the free and creative exchange of ideas and culture, and reflective of the diversity of our city. We do this by teaching the art of radio production and illuminating stories that are vital to our community. Our vision is to transform communities through participatory media and to create a unique radio landscape that inspires connection, collaboration and creativity.

The station is currently live-streaming at 993wbtv.org and will soon be broadcasting at 99.3FM on the radio dial. We have nearly 30 active community volunteers and two dozen shows in our schedule.

The WBTV-LP Station Coordinator is a shared position on behalf of Vermont Community Access Media (VCAM) and the Regional Educational Television Network (RETN) that will support the weekly operations of the station.

The Station Coordinator reports to VCAM’s Director of Media Services and works closely with VCAM and RETN staff and WBTV-LP community volunteers to ensure effective operations of the station. This is a part-time (10 hours/week) position with the potential for increased hours in the future.

Responsibilities include:
• Creating and maintaining the on-air schedule with programmers, including managing automation and scheduling and assisting with creation of pre-recorded content such as: underwriting spots, PSAs, legal IDs, and submitted content.
• Acting as liaison in key communications between VCAM and RETN staff and the WBTV-LP Radio Advisory Council (RAC) and WBTV-LP programmers.
• FCC and licenser reporting, as needed
• Underwriting tracking and reporting
• Station document and database management
• Tech support coordination
• Scheduling and overseeing WBTV-LP studio usage
• Management of media content and storage
• General upkeep of the WBTV-LP space
• Attending some WBTV-LP committee meetings
• Outreach support, as available

Experience Required:
• 1-2 years of leadership experience, preferably with volunteers, and proven project management.
• Strong interpersonal skills, with the ability to maintain relationships with volunteers, VCAM and RETN staff, and the larger community.
• Effective and timely communication skills, across multiple platforms.
• Knowledge and/or experience in community media, preferably community/college radio.
• Working knowledge of tech skills in audio and media production.

Compensation: $15 – $18/hour, part-time

Applications due Friday, April 21.

Submit a cover letter and resume to: apply@vermontcam.org

WBTV-LP, VCAM and RETN are Equal Opportunity Employers (EOE), this includes providing equal opportunity to all applicants, regardless of their social identities. We strongly encourage women, people of color, LGBTQ people, and those with differing abilities to apply .

Pinch us.

The final piece of our studio build was installed yesterday–the counter. It is new, it is shiny, it is custom made to ensure the studio is accessible, comfortable, and fits all the gear radio makers will need to broadcast!

What’s next?

We finish our first round of programmer training (yup, we have had 25+ folks getting trained up on station basics, the art of radio, and next, the studio tech). We will have these folks be our first “beta” schedule as we stream online later this fall.

Then what?

Hot on the heels of getting online, we will raise a broadcast tower and pump out 100 watts of broadcast quality content to all of Burlington (and then some).

Can I still become a programmer?

Yup! We are always taking new apps, but you will have to wait till our next round of new programmer training (likely early in 2017) before you can join our first crew of programmers.

What can make this move faster?

Your time.

Your donations.

I still have questions…

We have answers.